Kestner 1880s All-Bisque Doll: Poetry in Miniature

Kestner All-Bisque Doll in Miniature Room by Denise Van Patten

Kestner All-Bisque Doll in Miniature Room by Denise Van Patten

Generally speaking, when it comes to antique dolls, I collect the French ones. But, there are a few exceptions. I have a real love of antique miniature, all-bisque and dollhouse dolls, and overall, I prefer the German all-bisque dolls to the French ones.

The doll pictured is one of my favorite all-bisque dolls. She is a German doll from approximately 1885, made by Kestner. She stands 6 inches tall, and has four-strap ankle boots, beautiful painting, peg-jointing and what I believe to be her original wig. I just love the modeling and the expressions on these early all-bisques from Kestner. I also love the modeling on their bodies.

I originally purchased this doll in 1999 from Theriault’s at their auction “The Little Ones”. I’m surprised after being a collector all these years that I remember so well where I acquired nearly all of my dolls–especially ones like this that I have owned for 15 years or more!  I have posed this little all-bisque in a miniature room that I made while I was a Vice President at Fox TV back in the 1990s. I used to work on miniatures back then as a stress-release. This was also when I was transitioning from working at Fox to more creative endeavors while raising my children.  Many people forget that for a short time I was actually the Miniatures Guide at before I was their Doll Guide for 15 years! And, hence my fascination with all things small.

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